Dragon 389 - Class Acts: Druid – Expanding Horizons

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DnDi_Large.png   Dragon 389
Class Acts: Druid
Expanding Horizons

By Anthony Harrison

In today's Class Acts: Druid article, Anthony features the Coven of the Garden, a multi-faction Druid Circle that strive to remain in constant communion with the Primal Spirits.  Each of the three factions leans towards a particular Druid build – Guardians with the Inner Garden, Predators with the Anemochory, and Swarms with the Outer Garden – and in addition to detailing how each interacts with the world, each build gets a few new powers that are thematically appropriate for the sect.

The Coven of the Garden originally worked through secretive methods in a well-hidden garden in the depths of the woods. It recently relocated its esoteric culture so that it could take root in the heart of civilization. This migration created opportunities to further their myriad goals, including establishing harmony with nature wherever they can within the world’s points of light.

Talk about this article here.
389_ca_druid.jpg

Before posting, why not ask yourself, What Would Wrecan Say?

IMAGE(http://images.onesite.com/community.wizards.com/user/marandahir/thumb/9ac5d970f3a59330212c73baffe4c556.png?v=90000)

A great man once said "If WotC put out boxes full of free money there'd still be people complaining about how it's folded." – Boraxe

I've said it before, I'll say it again.

Could we please get some non-beast form powers?
Another day, another three or four entries to my Ignore List.
Somewhat sad to see it is all beast form stuff. Still, some cool powers in there - Primal Beast Apotheosis is very versatile, and I love the spreading plague of Infesting Strike, or the classic 'insect dominate' of the Infesting Drone.

Like many Class Acts articles, I almost feel like the fluff is... halfway there, and thus kinda meaningless. There almost seems to be a story to the "Coven of the Garden", but too many details seem to be missing to really make use of it, or have it inspire me as a DM. I'd rather have just a bit more info to make it worthwhile, or remove it entirely to open up space for other useful stuff. This half-measure, I think, doesn't quite work for anyone.
Somewhat sad to see it is all beast form stuff. Still, some cool powers in there - Primal Beast Apotheosis is very versatile, and I love the spreading plague of Infesting Strike, or the classic 'insect dominate' of the Infesting Drone.

Like many Class Acts articles, I almost feel like the fluff is... halfway there, and thus kinda meaningless. There almost seems to be a story to the "Coven of the Garden", but too many details seem to be missing to really make use of it, or have it inspire me as a DM. I'd rather have just a bit more info to make it worthwhile, or remove it entirely to open up space for other useful stuff. This half-measure, I think, doesn't quite work for anyone.



I love the powers.  Form of the Night Owl is cool.  The fluff just is too everywhere and not enough somewhere.  At first, the concept of "Garden Druids in Civilisation" sounded cool.  But then we have this concept of the same sect going to guard planar boundaries, and then the same sect with nuturing a sort of "primal spark" – taking in the primal spirits, which is the Shaman's fluff, not the Druids: the Druid deals with primal beasts, and isn't a link to the other spirits. 

Any one of these would be an okay fluff focus for a Druid sect article.  But this sect is trying to do too much, and as a result, is uninteresting to say the least.  I'd rather have them focus on one aspect that any of the druid builds might deal with, or focus on one build, and regardless, give more than just a few powers.

Before posting, why not ask yourself, What Would Wrecan Say?

IMAGE(http://images.onesite.com/community.wizards.com/user/marandahir/thumb/9ac5d970f3a59330212c73baffe4c556.png?v=90000)

A great man once said "If WotC put out boxes full of free money there'd still be people complaining about how it's folded." – Boraxe

A decent beast form utility power at last!
Somewhat sad to see it is all beast form stuff. Still, some cool powers in there - Primal Beast Apotheosis is very versatile, and I love the spreading plague of Infesting Strike, or the classic 'insect dominate' of the Infesting Drone.

Like many Class Acts articles, I almost feel like the fluff is... halfway there, and thus kinda meaningless. There almost seems to be a story to the "Coven of the Garden", but too many details seem to be missing to really make use of it, or have it inspire me as a DM. I'd rather have just a bit more info to make it worthwhile, or remove it entirely to open up space for other useful stuff. This half-measure, I think, doesn't quite work for anyone.



I love the powers.  Form of the Night Owl is cool.  The fluff just is too everywhere and not enough somewhere.  At first, the concept of "Garden Druids in Civilisation" sounded cool.  But then we have this concept of the same sect going to guard planar boundaries, and then the same sect with nuturing a sort of "primal spark" – taking in the primal spirits, which is the Shaman's fluff, not the Druids: the Druid deals with primal beasts, and isn't a link to the other spirits

Any one of these would be an okay fluff focus for a Druid sect article.  But this sect is trying to do too much, and as a result, is uninteresting to say the least.  I'd rather have them focus on one aspect that any of the druid builds might deal with, or focus on one build, and regardless, give more than just a few powers.


i remember reading that, of the primal classes, the druid has the stronger link to the primal spirits.  would have to search for the quote, but if you need it, let me know.
No, Primal Power says the opposite.

Quote from the Druid section:

"As with characters of other primal classes, your powers derive from your relationship with the primal spirits. However, your most important relationship is with the Primal Beast, the mysterious and savage entity that enables your wild shape power.

When you're fighting in your humanoid form, your evocations often direct and manipulate the spirits. But you don't normally communicate with the spirits in battle or summon them with conjurations. You summon beasts, not spirits. Your connection with nature during battle is more visceral-like bones crunching between your fangs or like lightning rippling out of your soul as you become the storm. The Primal Beast inhabits your flesh and shapes you into an echo of one of its many forms.

Outside combat, though, you might have much broader contact with a range of primal spirits, particularly in your use of ritual magic. Removed from the frenzy of combat, you are the most adept ritual caster in the spirit way" (Primal Power, 34).

Quote from the Shaman section:

"None of the other primal heroes understand the spirits as well as you do. Wardens embody the protective role of the spirits, but that's not the same as understanding them. Barbarians are generally too single·minded to grasp the implications of what the spirits are showing them while they're raging. Druids understand the viewpoint of the animal spirits, the Primal Beast, and many others, but their perspective is limited.

It's up to you to grapple with the full range of the spirits that surge through the primal world and their viewpoints. Sometimes your allies might think you're absentminded, disconnected, or otherworldly. It's true that you aren't always fully aware of what your physical allies are talking about, but that's because you have hundreds, maybe even thousands, of spirit allies flowing around you, and sometimes what the spirits have to tell you is more important than the paladin's tale of her latest exploit or the rogue's display of acrobatics" (Primal Power, 70).

Before posting, why not ask yourself, What Would Wrecan Say?

IMAGE(http://images.onesite.com/community.wizards.com/user/marandahir/thumb/9ac5d970f3a59330212c73baffe4c556.png?v=90000)

A great man once said "If WotC put out boxes full of free money there'd still be people complaining about how it's folded." – Boraxe

So, Druids are big into embodied spirits, while Shamans are big into incorporeal spirits? I can buy that.
D&DNext: HTFU Edition
No, Primal Power says the opposite.

Quote from the Druid section:

"As with characters ofother primal classes, your powers derive from your relationship with the primal
spirits. However, your most important relationship is with the Primal Beast, the mysterious and savage
entity that enables your wild shape power.

When you're fighting in your humanoid form, your evocations often direct and manipulate the spirits. But you don't normally communicate with the spirits in battle or summon them with conjurations. You summon beasts, not spirits. Your connection with nature during battle is more visceral-like bones crunching between your fangs or like lightning rippling out ofyour soul as you become the storm. The Primal Beast inhabits your flesh and shapes you into an echo of one of its many forms.

Outside combat, though, you might have much broader contact with a range of primal spirits, particularly in your use of ritual magic. Removed from the frenzy of combat, you are the most adept ritual caster in the spirit way" (Primal Power, 34).

Quote from the Shaman section:

"None of the other primal heroes understand the spirits as well as you do. Wardens embody the protective role ofthe spirits, but that's not the same as understanding them. Barbarians are generally too single·minded to grasp the implications of what the spirits are showing them while they're raging. Druids understand the viewpoint of the animal spirits, the Primal Beast, and many others, but their perspective is limited.

It's up to you to grapple with the full range of the spirits that surge through the primal world and their viewpoints. Sometimes your allies might think you're absentminded, disconnected, or otherworldly. It's true that you aren't always fully aware of what your physical allies are talking about, but that's because you have hundreds, maybe even thousands, of spirit allies Flowing around you, and sometimes what the spirits have to tell you is more important than the paladin's tale of her latest exploit or the rogue's display of acrobatics" (Primal Power, 70).


i recognize what primal power says, and that probably holds more authority that any other 4e source on the subject.

i cannot find the source to which i referred.  i remember the reference mainly because i thought it unusual.  oh well.  bygones. 

i recognize what primal power says, and that probably holds more authority that any other 4e source on the subject.

i cannot find the source to which i referred.  i remember the reference mainly because i thought it unusual.  oh well.  bygones. 



If you find that quote, I'd like to see it, because it opposes anything and everything I've known about their distinction. 

Before posting, why not ask yourself, What Would Wrecan Say?

IMAGE(http://images.onesite.com/community.wizards.com/user/marandahir/thumb/9ac5d970f3a59330212c73baffe4c556.png?v=90000)

A great man once said "If WotC put out boxes full of free money there'd still be people complaining about how it's folded." – Boraxe